Best Gelato: Gelateria Uli
In the Historic Core of downtown, the frozen case of Gelateria Uli is a combination of three influences — standard flavors like stracciatella, chocolate, California pistachio and espresso, made in the traditional Italian way; seasonal ingredients; and tastes from various neighborhoods. The handmade gelato in seasonal flavors that comes out of the small kitchen with just one refrigerator and one batch freezer represents the diverse cultures and bounty of L.A.
In addition to the regular flavors, and depending on what the farmers have to offer, in spring you’ll find blood orange and grapefruit sorbets, followed by black mission fig with toasted almonds in the summer, persimmon sorbet in fall and mulled wine sorbet in winter.
With ingredients sourced weekly from the local farmers markets, you might find cucumber sorbet with chili oil, yogurt with cherry jam and black sesame, or sorbet made from Murray Family farms blueberries.
The black sesame gelato for Chinese New Year was inspired by black sesame sweet buns in the San Gabriel Valley, the jamaica agua fresca and horchata flavors are an ode to every taco shop or truck in L.A., and the coconut and lemongrass sorbet was inspired by Thai Town. And if you have an abundance of your own backyard fruit, bring it to the gelateria and they will customize a batch of sorbet or gelato for you. —Michele Stueven
541 S. Spring St., downtown; (213) 537-0931; 8044 West Third St., Beverly Grove; (323) 424-3492, gelateriauli.com.